tv Andrea Mitchell Reports MSNBC June 13, 2017 9:00am-10:01am PDT
man at the center of this fire storm as the deputy attorney general who overseas the special council says he intends to defend the integrity of the investigation. >> is there anything to a credit plan from any of you out there? >> there is no secret plan that involves me. >> the attorney general on capitol hill facing questions about his contacts with the russians and his relationship with the president. >> so had will explain if this third meeting was an quality meeting and they accepted some contacts with kisliak. he may have been exaggerating the meeting so he could look important. a a prisoner is free. they release an american college student held for 17 months.
>> he is on his way, en route home to be reunited with his family. we continue our discussions with the north korean regime regarding the release of the 3 other american citizens that have been detained. >> good day to you, i'm kristen welker in from andrea, we will here from her in just a moment. we begin here in washington where president trump's efforts to make health care reform the center of attention are being overshadowed. first the testimony from jeff sessions this afternoon, and special council bob mueller, this as close trump confident voices his belief that the president is taking steps to terminate mueller. newt gingrich who floated the
idea that the president should fire mueller changed his tune. >> do you think he is considering firing robert mueller? >> no. >> why? >> because i think he is confident that it will come out in the wash. the president, he and i have talked about it a little bit. >> when is the last time you talked to him? >> last night. >> christopher ruddy is joining me right here in the studio. so you say the president is considering firing robert mueller. >> i said the president was keeping it as an option. it was consistent with what the president' own state's attorney said a day before on national television, look, i think the president is a very savvy business guy.
if you read the art of the deal, he says keep adversaries in the dark. >> how do you know it has been an option? is it something you have been hearing from top officials. >> i run news max, anyone can take a look, and you will see that we have very good sources. >> you're hearing this from the administration services. >> when is the last time you spoke to the president? >> i spoke to him last week. >> did he raise the possibility at all of letting robert mueller -- >> we did not talk about the muler situation. >> not at all? >> i still stand by that it is an option, or at least the information that i have as of yesterday, and the president's own attorney has said this.
>> let me get specific if you. you were at the white house, meeting with steve bannan and reince priebus. >> i don't discuss who i saw at the white house and what the topic of conservation was. this is an illegitimate special council. the statute, very important for your vup iewers to understand t, says the special council can only be triggered if there is an under lying criminal probe. can you just tell me what is the attention against the president of any of his officials. >> for the legitimacy of the special council it would be up for debate, but i want to go back to your meeting at the white house, and democrats and republicans would disagree with you. let me go back to your meetings at the white house yesterday. did the top officials meet with?
>> i would not ask you as a journalist what you, or -- >> i did not talk to the president about the issue. i do not believe he will fire him. i believe he has the league right to do it, i believe it's an option as the president's own attorney said on sunday. >> is it an active option? >> you should really speak to the white house. i just told you what i knew, and my larger issue is that the president is under immediate attack that no other president in history has had. these issues often times are side shows to the larger issue, the press will not report about any of his achievements. >> that's understood, but why do you feel confident it was an option, is it something you heard from top officials at the white house. >> i already said that i will not reveal who my sources are, but i felt confidence in seeing
it, and it was consistent in what the president's own attorneys said. >> sean was hoping i would put out a tweet. i never claimed that i was on pbs last night, i never claimed that i spoke with the president. since nobody claimed it, why would you issue a press release? again i think the white house communications office is doing a disservice to the president by not focusing on the fact that you have several now top prosecutors with corrector mu o mueller that have donated to campaigns. i believe it is a partisan effort to get the president by the special council, and they
are like octopuses. what is the allegations? >> trying to get to the i don't want to sidetracks here, speaking about the communications dth, you said some of the team was amateur hour, what do you mean by that? >> i think if you're putting out press releases at 11:00 at night says chris ruddy did not speak with the president on this manner when i never said i did, it is ridiculous, isn't it? i think the president himself gave his own communications dth a -- department a c plus. the first citizen president. he opened up china in 90 days. he is getting nato companies to finally pay their fair share.
he is doing a program that president obama could have done. there is so many things he could have done. and they are upset about the election. >> and that trip was wisely covered, but i want to bless you. i have spoken to spokes in the white house saying you're not in exact with the president and you don't know what you're talking about in wards to that. >> i think she doing an amazing job. no president in history has had the media attacks that this president has had. you have them turn out stories against the president. they didn't have 30 reporters doing that against barack obama. the data shows that the this is
amazing considering the on slaut you have put him through. i think you can criticize the president. >> i want to go back to some of your criticism of the team. do you think he is thinking about a shake up. >> the next person to ask that is trump. i don't speak on his behalf. i can tell you only what i think my view is. there is significant weakness there. the president really needs to have a voice that represents him. i think he is right on that. >> do you think he should shake up some of his staff? >> one more point on mueller before we go on. i have other questions to get to with you. the president has fired michael
flynn, james comey. should robert mueller feel safe in his job? >> the day before muler was appointed special council, he met with the president that was speaking with the man who made him fbi director. it seems he should have disclosed that immediately to see, i think there is a real conflict and the public needs to see this as a agenda getting the president -- nobody in the white house has ever he needsed -- needed.
it s a constant strain about the white house missing something. >> i about robert mueller is secure in his job? >> i don't want to make a judgment, but he was appointed special council without any legal basis. it says there has to be an underlying probe. i do think it is a good point, but i think the public needs to have a full disclosure of the facts here. what is the evidence of it? they keep saying the investigative agencies are saying there is no collusion, but you have to ask yourself why do they keep hiring prosecutors. >> let's get to the investigation, the focus today,
i know based on my reporting that the president was very frustrated. do you think it was the wrong move? >> i have not spoken to the president about it, but my view that sessions should not have rescuesed himself. there was no under -- what about when he heads into this critical system? >> i'm not privy to what the nature of that relationship is. >> do you think the president thinks he has jeff session's loyalty? >> i have not spoken to the president on that, so i can't comment on that. >> one final point, does the mere talk and speculation i
think there is con stanstant increases. and when the president says hey, we're being subject to this, no, i think these things keep growing and the media keeps focusing on these stories. china hoped up their markets for the first time in 30 years. he just brought a 100 billion dollars -- >> we covered that extensively. >> but it's not getting the amount of coverage, and we have a president for the first time, every board room is keeping jobs, and i think it is exceptional. i know trump's poe sus is making
america economically strong and militarily strong. >> i appreciate you coming in. thank you so much, i appreciate it. >> i want to turn now to our team for instant reaction. kacie hunt and chuck todd are joining me, what is your take? >> we're well aware that reaches out to an outside kitchen cabinet. so i think you take him at hill word on the frustrations out here, but what he clearly doesn't acknowledge is the situation escalated to this point where they have right now where he was nut this position
all because the president and his inability to compartmentalize this. if he just left james comey alone. the second was one claiming there could be tape. so we just kept asking what is the situation is. he is alleging obstruction of justice. he is not saying there is an investigation yet, but that is essentially what he did, he left a bread crumb trail for robert mueller. it does -- that is the trigger for the special council, and that is the reason, but you can't -- you and i don't have that information. we can't confirm there is an investigation open, but it is obvious to me that if you watch
the testimony and you know what it is about, and comby is saying his motivation for leaking his memos, which he knew it would trigger a special investigation. >> if you take what we just heard from chris ruddy and newt gingrich, do you think the president is really actively considering firing robert mueller or is he just thumping his crest? >> the fact of the matter is he fired james comey. so if it is something he can do, he will ponder it. i think it is an interesting aspect in that he does like to live his life with exit ramps. always having an out, always making sure. is he serious about it? list it is just about a talking point. i have to says that my frustration right now, we're on
a side trip here, but he pushed us down a side track here. we're talking about obstruction of justice, an abusive power situation going on, but we're talking about a side track. it is a centralish. did any americans infiltrate the election. that is why i don't understand that the president does say i want to get to the bottom of this too. every day he doesn't do that he raises suspicion. it is his own doing on this front. >>. >> they did get dragged into what they called as a side show of all of this.
>> you are the one exercising hiring and firing authority because attorney general sessions is recused, is that correct? >> that's correct. >> have you given the special council full independence from the justice department to conduct his investigation. >> i'm confident that he has full independence. >> what do you make of that exchange? >> he was asked repeatedly about all of this firing of robert mueller and he answered that under the regulations that governor the special council, the only person that fire the council is the deputy attorney general. he was asked what if the president ordered you to do it. would that constitute.
what it is. . there is no secret plan to fire him and he stated his reform for it. so for what they were talking about with the justification of the special council. before he testified in march, he disclosed there was an investigation, this is the way he scribed it, he said the fbi was investigating the nature of the trump campaign and the russian government. so he disclosed there already was an investigation, and then the special council rule says one was appointed if the deputy general says that it is warranted and it would be in the conflict or special interest for
a special council. so they decided that existing investigate should be in the hands of the special council. >> in terms of taking what we heard from rod rosenstein, would he need to direct rod rosenstein to do that and is it possible, like he just said, that he would not fall low through? the president would have to direct him to -- the president would have to direct the deputy attorney general to fire robert mueller and only the deputy director can fire him. that seems to be the way it is set up. >> kacie, let me go over to you. speaker ryan was very firm, he thinks it will be a very bad idea. let's listen and i'll have you
react on the other side. >>. >> i think in the best case for the president is to be vindicated by allowing the investigation to go on thoroughly and independently. so i think it would be to let robert mueller going on. >> you're creating a debate that is not happening. >> i heard this was a rumor you heard last night. >> kacie, republicans are saying this would be a bad idea to fire robert mueller and the talk of it is politically damaging. >> yes, it is problematic for them, it is another day when republicans are concerns about something that the president is doing. this is one where they're not necessarily defending him. they are saying this is not even the case, but i spoke to the committee, and it doesn't make sense to end something before it
began. the think the prevailing view is that if there is nothing to hide, the investigation will show there is nothing to hide. there are not any republican that's were trying to pass of robert mueller's credibility here. >> they're for helping me break all of that down. it is right here on msnbc. coming up, in session, what more we can expect when the attorney general testifies coming up. when your pain reliever stops working, your whole day stops. awww. try this. for minor arthritis pain, only aleve can stop pain for up to 12 straight hours with just one pill. thank you. [ upbeat music playing ] you can't quit, neither should your pain reliever. stay all day strong with 12 hour aleve. check this sunday's paper for
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i think the president is a very savvy business guy. if you read the hart of the deal, he says keep all of your options open. do i think he will fire him, no, but is it an option, has it within an option? yes. >> joining me no is george wells. thank you to my guests for being here. what was your main take away from the ber view? >> my main take away is that the president is not going to fire robert mueller, but he would like to. he sees it as a annoyance.
something that diverts his agenda into some league jepty. he probably spends a huge amount of time complaining about it. >> i'm going to go to video of the president meeting with members of congress. >> at least 19,000 people in ohio will have no plan at all. nationwide, one in three u.s. counties have only a single insurer and many of them have announced that they're leaving. obama care has been broken and it is a broken promise. one after ago, americans were told that if you like your doctor, you will keep your doctor. that was a lie. if they liked their plan they would keep their plan, and that was a lie. americans were told that
premiums would go down, that was lie, instead that went up to levels that no one even thought was possible. now the senate is working very, very hard, specifically the folks in this room, i appreciate what they're doing. it will be a phenomenal bill for the people our our country. generous, kind with heard. and it may be adding additional sbhun it. the results will be fantastic and hopefully it will be announced at the appropriate time and everyone will be happy. by contrast, republicans and congress have, as hard as they're working, you have the over side that have been
obstructionists. oechb the even that new motto, it is called resist, and it is accurate. i said if we came up with the greatest health care plan or tax cut, if we came up with the greatest health care or tax cut ever in our country's history, we would not get one democratic vote. so the republicans are working hard. we passed and signed 38 pieces of legislation that no one likes to talk about. i think probably has any president and administration dope more or had more success early on. he limb nating job killing regulations. we see it all over the country where jobs are starting that never would have started
anywhere ever. i would like to thank our vice president for being here, the senators who i have gotten to know and love some, and know and like others, but i have great rips with a all of them, and i have great respect for everyone here. manufacturing confidence is a all-time high. the highest level of confidence in the history of the reports, statistics for many, many years, i'll tell you, and in the history of this report, the confidence level is at the highest point it has ever been. companies are moving back into the united states. they are expanding their existing plans, and they're saying maybe we'll just have to build them in the united states.
i was also really thrilled last week in pennsylvania they are opening a brand new coal mine. the first one that has hoped in a long time. brand new, many of them are being reopened, but it is a brand new mine. so we're keeping our promise to the american people and that is why it is so important for the senate and the senators with us today, to keep up with a great health care plan. the economy is great, everything seems to be working really well, and have very big focus for us over the next period of time will be tax cuts, tax reform, and we are putting in a very big infrastructure plan and for this group in particular, it will be a focus on obama care, repeal
and replace. i have been talking about repealing and replacing it for almost two years now. june 14th is my birthday, june 16th i announced i was running. and some people said really? so we're very happy about that. we're going to repeal and replace obama care. we kept our promises, we got rid of the regulations, with it going to get even better. numbers for the quarter will be very good, i believe. when the numbers are announced they will be shockingly good based on the facts that we're hearing and based on the enthuse yach. and i want to thank you all and i want to thank you senators have being there.
and we'll start talking about repealing and replacing obama care. >> what is your timeframe -- >> president trump meeting with senators. ignoring questions about if he plans to fire robert mueller. she not doing that, the white house is not doing that, politically isn't it just overshadowing what he wants to be talking about. things like health care. >> no, they're making it even more overshadowing. we're going to have clearly a coordinator that will discredit him. i don't know if it is wise for mr. mueller to hire some investigators and prosecutor that's are contributors, that is another matter. it is difficult to present muler
as a -- >> and go ahead -- >> i think george's point is very important, there is a very concerted effort to do this to someone that was confirmed, nominated by george bush. confirmed to an additional two years. widespread support and credit ability. >> let's talk about what we will see today on capitol hill. a whole host of questions on the table, he may be one of the few people that can speak to why james comey was fired. >> comey tad in his someone, that the fbi had information that made it problematic, what is it?
does mr. sessions know about it? does he dispute anything. he said the president is a lie er remember the importance, mr. importance, mr. sessions was one of the capitol hill. it is as strong as it gets with the support of capitol hill. >> one of the first supporters. they talk about this is good for us. there is a bigger question here what are you looking to hear? >> there are almost certainly will be, let's not forget that this is the first time the tern general has testified in open hearings on capitol hill since
he has confirmed that he has not been in front of the appropriations committees. there was questions about whether or not she has been totally candid with the committee. the president is talking about health care. at the erchtt of the day, one of the places -- >> of doing so much sort of cheerleading in this moment, and looking like they are obstructionists. >> it is funny to hear the president talk about obstruction. . i think democrats and republicans have played the hearings very well, when chuck was saying is the issue. when is someone on chill and in this administration going to
care that russia tries to do something in our elections and when will we discussion that. i think the more the president makes it about himself -- how will we keep our election system safe. >> some republicans say they think they can get a vote in the senate before the july 4th recess. >> listen, the president has now joined the chorus saying barack obama care is collapsing. there are policies adopted by the branch. the more they say it is collapsed, the more urgent it becomes to erase it. the president says i'm going to replace obama care with something fabulous. he said it had will be wonderful and kind. there is a pattern here.
they say this president has nato member contributions. they say he put forward tax reform, it was one page, and they say he has an infrastructure plan out there, no, he doesn't. we don't know how he will finance it or any other details. don't count your chickens before their hatched, we have an enormous number of unhatched chicken the here. >> thank you so much for a great conversation. >> secretary of state rex tillerson says a student has been released from north korea. he had been medically evacuated from the country in a coma. >> at president's direction, the department and state has secured the release of otto from north korea. he is on his way en route home to be reunited with his family.
we continue our discussions with the north korea regime regarding the release of the three other citizen that's have been detained. >> joining us now, andrea mitchell, in havana. great to see you. just want to get your take starting with what we heard from the secretary of state. why now, and let's just remind our viewers we know that dennis rodman was in north korea, but no connection that we know of for this release. >> the state department has been pressing hard, but this young man has been in a coma, according to his family, for a year. he was very seriously ill. he was arrested for tearing down a poster, they say, and this medical evacuation should have
happened so much sooner and there is great concern for his medical condition. >> let's shift focus to why you in cuba. you're there ahead of president trump's announcement on the new policies, we understand that entrepreneurs sent a letter to ivanka prump and i understand you met with one of them. >> i met with several of them. she is a business owner, she has a magazine, she has an accounting firm, a messenger firm. and this is part of my conversation with her. >> you helped organize this let
tore ivanka trump, what is your message? >> my message is to make known that there are a lot of informations. we're very happy with our establishment with the u.s. that help us to empower us and empower other women, and that we want to continue to continue with the relationship with the u.s. >> this is a small growing number here. the administration, and secretary tillerson had this in his testimony today. the administration is trying to aim this at the government and in particular at the defense ministries. they say the money being raised by americans traveling here are going right into the pockets of the government because they own
40% of the hotels here. there are all of these people here, that have been growing their businesses, their b and bs, and they are private entrepreneurs, many of the business owners are going to be really affected, intending on what president trump announces on friday. and let me give you one example of the overall embargo and how it has impacted. so specifically, the treasury has found the organization in america $ 87,000 because of 13 cars leased by a honda subsidiary to the embassy in
ottawa, canada. of course honda is not going to do business with cuban embassies ever again through subsidiaries or any other place in the world. it is done through executive orders, and that is largely what we expect to be repealed. >> a tremendous interview, it puts a face on challenge that's happening in cuba and you will be back here tomorrow, thank you for that great reporting as always. . it is the second day of bill cosby's sexual assault case. he reentered the court after the jury had a question for him. a verdict could be reached at any moment, and we will bring
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administrati administration's attempt to limit travel from six predominantly muslim countries. donald trump tweeted this this morning. joining me now is california attorney general who recently served 12 terms in congress, thank you for joining me. i want to turn to this travel ban. yesterday you fired a brief with the supreme court opposed the administration's efforts to impose that travel ban on people from predominantly muslim countries. >> we want to make sure our constitution, laws, and leaders abide by the protections that we have provided for over 200 years. we don't want to start going backwards in the rights and protections that people have. and the trump muslim travel ban
was going in the wrong direction saying that we would make the case in people's origins. >> and of course the president says it is an urgent national security threat, this is necessary, does this give you pause at all. does he have any type of an argument there? >> donald trump says a lot of thing that's are hyperbole. we have gone through the same vetting process for the last several months while his travel ban has been on hold and we have seen that so long as duo it the right way, are you don't have to go to extremes no grekt the country. we should not be surprised by the words of donald trump. it is every court that has had an opportunity to look at the
travel plan that said it is unconstitutional. >> first, robert mueller, a lot of speculation that the him. no indication that that's imminent. politically what do you make of this? do you think this is something he might actually do? >> independent counsel means independent, meaning someone should not be able to interfere. i believe if donald trump were to try to fire lou manfredirobet will backfire on him and make congressional republicans decide if they would be leaders for the country or party. it's time to allow independence to give us clear answers. >> all eyes on capitol hill this afternoon when attorney general jeff sessions testifies. what specifically do you want to hear from him today? >> well, he should clarify what his role has been. has he really recused himself and removed himself from the process altogether.
i wouldn't be surprised, kristen, if attorney general sessions uses this attorney to try to clean up his own record on what he has done and said in the past before robert mueller starts an independently investigating this stuff. >> attorney general bosara thank you for your time and insight this afternoon. appreciate it. >> thank you. coming up as we said under two hours until jeff sessions' turn in the hot seat. our reporters join us for the inside scoop. that's next right here on "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. . be the you who shows up in that dress. who hugs a friend. who is done with treatments that don't give you clearer skin. be the you who controls your psoriasis with stelara® just 4 doses a year after 2 starter doses. stelara® may lower your ability to fight infections and may increase your risk of infections and cancer. some serious infections require hospitalization. before treatment, get tested for tuberculosis. before starting stelara® tell your doctor if you think you have an infection or have symptoms such as: fever, sweats, chills, muscle aches or cough. always tell your doctor if you have any signs of infection,
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i think the president's frustrated as are a lot of white house people that there's constant increases in investigations when there's no underlying evidence of any crime and they keep saying there's no evidence. i think the president is frustrated. this is my view. that these things keep growing and the media keep focusing on these stories. >> news max media ceo chris ruddy defending president trump. let's get the inside scoop from jeremy from "the new york times" reporter and msnbc contributor and susan page washington bureau chief. jeremy, i want to start with you and what we heard from chris ruddy. he has sort of joined the chorus of voices trying to undermine the russia investigation. you've written about this and something that right wing conspiracy theorists are doing as well. talk about what you have found and how you think it's playing into and potentially fueling
some of the talk about potentially firing robert mueller. >> i wouldn't put chris in the cat fwo category of right wing conspiracy theorists. there is a blurred line between those on the far right ped ling fake news to undermine the investigation and the mainstream conservative press like fox news and rush limbaugh where the stories are going from the fringe to the mainstream in a short amount of time and i focus on this one individual by the name of jack who was formerly a white house correspondent for a far right canadian news network who tweeted something that was completely false about james comey's testimony saying he exonerated donald trump which was demonstrably false. is broad, it is serious and really effective because it is sewing doubt as we've seen in the minds of ordinary americans
this is illegitimate. >> who it puts on the spot are republican office holders like paul ryan you saw him talk this morning about the investigation should go forward, it's legitimate, let it go forward and deal with legislation on other issues like health care and infrastructure. and you can see -- talk about chris ruddy talked about the president's president's us from station. he cannot get attention to the things he's doing because the russia investigation is a cloud darkening everything in its path. >> there is so much frustration within the republican party on that very point. we're just learning actually at this hour that there's just been a rule passed that reporters can no longer ask questions in the hallways of congress. amy klobuchar pushing back against that. that's going to have an impact as we try to listen to process the sessions' hearing. what do you make of that and what are you watching for today
with sessions? >> republicans cannot get away or run fast enough away from donald trump's political problems. this investigation has clouded not just their political agenda and their potential ability to keep the house of representatives from 2018 it's clouded their legislative agenda. they really -- what -- do you think this health care bill is going anywhere any time soon, tax reform, infrastructure, no. >> you don't think they will vote on it by july as some have floated. >> they may try to force a vote and say they've done it, but it's hard to see if there will be success at this time. one way to tamp down on that is to say okay we're not answering any more questions. paul ryan said i'm not taking more questions about donald trump. even lindsey graham will take about anybody's question said he's not. let's see what happens. >> what will you be listening for? >> i think everything has been so remarkable unprecedented the past couple months. let's not lose sight of how
remarkable and historic this event is today. the attorney general of the united states is under oath facing questions from his -- about the account from his ousted fbi director about matters involving those very close to the president and the new administration. this is -- this is incredible. and it's got the potential to be the defining event of the trump presidency in ways that are yet to unfold, so i think, you know, you want to watch what sessions says and what he refuses to address and the questions from the senators. >> great points. thanks to both of you for being here. appreciate it. and that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports" follow the show on-line on facebook and on twitter @mitchellreports and find me on twitter @kwelker nbc. chris jansing is up next here on msnbc. >> hey, kristen, thank you so much. i am chris jansing in for craig melvin. at this hour public sessions, high drama on capitol hill as
attorney general jeff sessions gets ready for a confrontation with 134 some of his former senate colleagues over his handling of the russia investigation. could his testimony damage the in the under fire, president trump's friend suggesting trump is considering firing special counsel robert mueller. would the president try to get rid of the man trying to lead the russia probe. the cosby verdict watch. the jury in the bill cosby sexual assault trial deliberating, could his own words in his deposition sway the jury. let's start with that highly anticipated public testimony of attorney general jeff sessions with indications he plans to contradict james comey's sworn testimony. the hearing begins next hour. it could well be contentious touching on the firing of james comey, the russia investigation and sessions' own conduct in office. this new story line with one of the president's closest friends saying trump could decide to fire special counsel robert mueller who is charged with